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Iraq and Iowa's 1st Congressional District

10:28 AM, Oct 2, 2006 • By DANIEL MCKIVERGAN
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The war is a big issue in an extremely competitive eastern Iowa Congressional race. Democratic Bruce Braley wants to runaway from Iraq (see http://www.weeklystandard.com/weblogs/TWSFP/2006/09/the_nie_dem_troop_wi... target=_blank>here for more on Dem withdrawal plans), while his opponent, Mike Whalen, doesn't. Braley has been warmly embraced by the very liberal Sen. Tom Harkin and is so far left on the war that his Democratic primary opponent, Rick Dickinson, ran this ad in June:

(Courtesy of Hotline)

ANNCR: "No matter how you feel about the Iraq war, everyone agrees we must do everything to protect our troops. Everyone it seems, but Bruce Braley. When asked by Des Moines Register reporter David Yepsen to define his stance on the war, Braley declared he would vote to cut off the funds supporting our troops on the ground. Is that a position you support?"

RUNDY: "This Ken Rundy (ph). I'm a former marine. I served my country during the Vietnam war years. Anyone who's been in uniform knows that cutting funds to our men and women in Iraq is irresponsible. There is no doubt this will put them in greater danger.

BRAIDBOCH: "This is Liz Braidboch (ph). My son David is now in Iraq for the third time. I want him to come home soon, but I'm afraid cutting the funds would only make getting all our soldiers home safely more difficult. The situation is bad enough now. I oppose Bruce Braley's plan to cut troop funding and I hope you will, too, because after all they have been through, we can't abandon them now"

Braley's Iraq position, the Des Moines Register reports, has also pitted two U.S. senators against each other:

Two senior U.S. senators Friday leaped into the increasingly nasty fight for a U.S. House seat in eastern Iowa, trading charges over the conduct of the war in Iraq.

The back-and-forth between Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., and Sen. Tom Harkin, D-Ia., ensued after McCain, in a conference call with reporters, attacked Democrat Bruce Braley, saying the 1st Congressional District candidate wants to cut off funds for troops.